On April 18, the Today Show shared the story of Henrico County Public Schools’ Career and Technical Education department’s first ever “Career and Technical Letter of Intent Signing Day,” which was held March 28 in Henrico County, Va.
Similar to National Signing Day for athletes, families and members of the media watched high school seniors sign letters of intent for employment upon graduation. The letters outlined what students must do before and during employment, what the employer will provide in pay and training and an estimate of the position’s value.
The purpose of Signing Day was to recognize students who have chosen to use the career training and industry certifications they obtained in high school to begin a career and become financially secure much earlier in life than many of their peers.
NRCA actively works and advocates for increased career and technical education (CTE) training in high schools across the U.S. In recent years it has become increasingly difficult for roofing contractors to find applicants to fill job openings despite vigorous efforts to recruit workers.
One of the primary causes of this difficulty has been the trend of parents and high school guidance counselors to steer students to a four-year college. The reality is a high percentage of students who go to college do not complete their first year and often consider themselves to be failures. They typically don’t wind up finding the construction industry or the roofing industry as a career option until they are well into their twenties.
Events such as Henrico County Public Schools’ Career and Technical Education’s Signing Day shine a light on the many misconceptions of learning a trade and beginning a career upon high school graduation.
NRCA applauds Henrico County Public Schools and the organizers of this unique event and hopes more high schools throughout the U.S. follow their lead.
To read the Today Show’s article about Signing Day in its entirety, click below.